Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Dave Waddell of the Windsor Star,
This is a pretty good situation, but I’m not thinking about that right now,” Stuart said. “I’d like to see how it plays out, but I’d like to explore the possibility of staying. When the time comes, I’m definitely hoping to be here.”
While financial considerations will play a role in any negotiation, Stuart said the price of happiness isn’t always tied to money.
The native of Rocky Mountain House, Alta., has had his fill of losing since entering the NHL with San Jose and L.A.
“Winning definitely comes into play,” the 28-year-old Stuart said.
“Being on a losing team is not that much fun no matter what you’re being paid. Coming to the rink, to a winning environment and a positive atmosphere is definitely worth something.
“Those things are going to be something I think more about after we’re done (the season).”
from Randy Sportak of the Calgary Sun,
A new contract for top-line centre Daymond Langkow is expected to come to fruition soon, and the club expects Matthew Lombardi to ascend into a second-line position for the coming season.
Where that leaves Conroy remains to be seen.
Conroy, content with the fact he’ll have to take a cut in pay from the US$2.85 million salary he received this past season and a reduced role to remain in Calgary, just has to sit and wait.
“They have to figure out what they want to do and make their decisions and let me know,” he said.
from Steve Simmons of the Toronto Sun,
An emotional, defiant, and argumentative David Frost took the witness stand yesterday in Ontario Provincial Court, claiming that the battery of sexual exploitation charges against him have made it impossible for him to make a living from hockey.
Making it sound as though he was once a National Hockey League player agent of significance, Frost almost broke down in describing the “financial hardship” his family has faced since he was charged with a multitude of sexual offences in August 2006.
from Rich Hofmann of the Philadelphia Daily News,
The young players - Mike Richards, Jeff Carter, R.J. Umberger - were young and struggling (and not entirely healthy). But Holmgren - remember, his old job was running the development side of the organization - was determined to stick with them. Still, it was hard. He admits to having to remind club chairman Ed Snider about how young the young players were.
“There was the uncertainty of my job - I didn’t know,” Holmgren said. “I can remember talking to Mr. Snider one time and we were getting beat on a regular basis and I remember saying to him, ‘We’re going to get lumped up even more.’ He kind of looked at me but he understood. I think I followed up by saying, ‘We’ve got some young kids who are going to turn the corner.’ I think he had a belief, like I did, that they would.”
Then, Holmgren said, “We felt we needed to stabilize certain areas of our team. Goaltending certainly was an issue.”
from John Buccigross of ESPN,
Back to the “Hockey players are the best guys” thing. I have worked at ESPN for close to 12 years, and I can tell you this: Jalen Rose is as nice and pleasant as Darren Pang. John Kruk is as fun to golf with as Ray Ferraro. I filmed one of those “This is SportsCenter” commercials with Vikings running back Adrian Peterson last week. While waiting for some other part of the commercial to be done with the Vikings mascot, Peterson and I sat in an office and talked alone for about a half hour. It reminded me of hanging out with Dany Heatley at the 2002 YoungStars game in Los Angeles. Both were humble, grounded and completely in love with their jobs.
Yes, hockey players are human and no different from other professional athletes. Uncensored hockey history would show that (depending on the topic we were talking about) some players cheat on their wives, have children out of wedlock, get in bar fights, smoke crack, drive while intoxicated, run through an AHL city naked, overpay Ted Saskin, and jump into the stands and fight fans, along with other crimes and misdemeanors. They are the same as other athletes in that regard.
But I think the cliché lives because of hockey’s otherworld status among most in the mass media.
from Jeff Gordon of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch,
Next season will be pivotal for the Dave Checketts/John Davidson Era of Blues hockey.
The Note must compete for one of the eight playoff spots in the Western Conference, thus proving that Andy Murray really is the right coach for this team. The Blues must continue building ticket sales, too, which is no small feat given the tough economy and last season’s second-half collapse.
Conventional wisdom says the Blues need to do something enormous this summer to meet both goals
from Jim Kelley of Sportsnet,
Both teams are well coached. Flyers boss John Stevens has rebounded from a (at times) difficult regular season to get his team focused and playing well while hiding perceived flaws on defence (lack of mobility) and in goal (stamina issues).
Michel Therrin has also brought his team along in a timely fashion. He’s dealt with a goaltending question (Marc-Andre Fleury or Ty Conklin) and chose wisely in Fleury. He has maximized his team’s solid firepower, but not at the expense of overall team defence. He has but one puck, but found a way to make a lot of players happy by moving it around a lot.
If you subscribed to the oft-stated theory that the playoffs are a marathon and not a sprint (and we do) then the Pens have piled up a significant advantage. You need to dispatch at least one team with relative easy to stay fresh enough (and healthy enough) to go deep in the playoffs.
Yet another NHL teleconference today featured Dallas Stars goaltender Marty Turco, who has posted and 8-4 record with a sparkling .173 goals-against average, and Dallas captain Brenden Morrow, who has recorded seven goals and four assists for 11 points in 12 games, including two overtime game winners in the series win over San Jose last round.
Here is the transcript of their Q&A.
Q. Marty, you’re just fresh off winning two incredible series and beating two fellow great goalies. I see right off the bat that people are already asking you about your record at Joe Louis. There’s no time to breathe. What do you make of that? Does it mean anything?
Today the NHL hosted more teleconferences, featuring coaches Dave Tippett and Mike Babcock, of the Dallas Stars and Detroit Red Wings.
Both transcripts from these Q&A’s are below.
from Ken Campbell of the Hockey News,
The Pittsburgh Penguins and Detroit Red Wings have positioned themselves best for the heavy lifting that will come, largely because they’ve managed to avoid a lot of heavy lifting through the first half of the playoffs.
And because of that, if history is any indicator, the Penguins and Red Wings will meet in the Stanley Cup final with the Penguins emerging as slight favorites at this point.
The fact Pittsburgh played three fewer games than the Philadelphia Flyers through the first two rounds and the Red Wings two fewer than the Dallas Stars might not seem like much, but history tells a different story.
About Kukla's Korner Hockey
Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.
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